Mote Marine Laboratory and Aquarium tags rays for research
SARASOTA, Fla. (WWSB) - Researches at Mote Marine Laboratory in Sarasota is conducting an experiment to analyze the relationship between spotted eagle rays and their shellfish prey.
The lab uses suction cup mounted “helmet” tags to collect acoustic and movement data on whitespotted eagle rays. These tags will help examine the relationship between eagle rays and their prey and can be leveraged to evaluate their interactions with shellfish aquaculture and restoration.
The five-year project will look at how the rays and other large shellfish predators consume and how that effects the overall health of the ecosystem.
The helmets are electronic multisensor biologging tags and they record audio, video and fine scale movements including acceleration, postural movements when feeding on the bottom, and interactions with the seabed. Working in this facility and recording known predation events helps the researchers build training “libraries” of sounds so that they can develop AI-based algorithms to detect and classify these interactions from sensors deployed in the wild.
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